Every time my family ordered pizza as a child, my father would find some way to sneak mushrooms onto the pizza, possibly tucked under an oblong of cheese according to special instruction to the pizza parlor. He was a fan, however, I was always convinced that one mushroom could ruin the entire pizza. As I’ve grown older and have developed a more refined taste (ok fine, I still enjoy Cinnamon Toast Crunch), I’ve come to understand how unique mushrooms are in the world of culinary. They give you a variety of flavors and textures that seem to adapt to any kind of dish. In addition, I discovered how mushrooms can be beneficial to your overall health. Consider this my ode to the mushroom.

Health Benefits

In terms of health edible mushrooms are right up there with other superfoods such as green tea and broccoli. For starters, the very first antibiotics came from mushrooms. Mushrooms are low in calories and high in fiber, with 80 to 90% of their water content. They are also low in cholesterol, fats and sodium which is great for people on hypertensive diets. Here are some good reasons to add more mushrooms to your food preparation.


  • Mushrooms are considered to be probiotic. They assist the body in strengthening itself and fighting off illness. One of the reasons for mushrooms’ probiotic ability comes from their high percentage of the nutritional nutrient riboflavin.
  • The best source of potassium in mushrooms is potassium. The mineral can lower blood pressure and lower stroke risk. A medium portabella mushroom contains more potassium than an orange juice or a banana.
  • The phytonutrients in mushrooms have been at the core of anti-cancer research for decades. Many countries employ medicinal mushrooms as an addition to traditional cancer treatment.
White (Button)


White mushrooms actually range in hues ranging from white through light brown and are available in many different sizes. Button mushrooms, which are smaller versions of white mushrooms, are the most frequently used for cooking. They can be purchased in the majority of supermarkets. White mushrooms are mild to delicate in flavor when freshly picked. The caps take on a more intense flavor when they get darker.


  • Recent studies have shown that white mushrooms can lower the chance of developing breast cancer.
Grilled Lemon Shrimp With Mushrooms


This nutritious meal is prepared with light lemon juice and garlic, cooked to perfection, and put into a pita. Carb-friendly and delicious!

Ingredients

8 oz. 8 oz. fresh white mushrooms

1 lb. large shrimp Peeled and deveined

2 medium-sized zucchinis, sliced 1″ thick (about 2 1/2 C.)

1 medium-sized red onion cut into 8 wedges

1/4 C. olive oil

2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1 teaspoon. 1 tsp.

1/2 teaspoon. salt

1/4 tsp. ground black pepper

4 pitas heated

Cucumber Yogurt Sauce:

1 C. plain low-fat yogurt

1 C. diced, peeled, seeded , and seeded cucumber

1 Tbs. 1 Tbs. chopped fresh mint or parsley

1 tsp. minced garlic

1/2 tsp. salt

Directions

Prepare your outdoor grill or broiler until it is hot. Small mushrooms can be left whole. chop larger ones into halves. Put the shrimps, mushrooms, red onions and zucchini in a large bowl. In a small bowl mix olive oil and lemon juice as well as garlic, oregano black pepper, salt, and then pour over the vegetables. mix until coated. Place the shrimp and veggies on the grill rack or in a broiler pan. Grill or broil not more than 6 inches away from heat until the shrimp and vegetables are just cooked, around 8 minutes, stirring often and brushing them with the remaining marinade. Serve with pitas and Cucumber Yogurt Sauce.

Mix all ingredients together in small bowls and mix well to make sauce. Makes about 1 1/2 cups.

Yield: 4 portions

From St. Petersburg Times. Petersburg Times

Nutrition information per serving 308 calories and 25gm protein, with 16gm fat

Crimini/Cremini/Italian Brown

Crimini mushrooms resemble white mushrooms but have darker hues. They range between light brown and dark brown. They are firmer in texture, and a more earthier flavor than white ones. They are a great substitute of white mushrooms, and are delicious with beef.


  • Crimini mushrooms are a good source of selenium that is necessary for proper functioning of the antioxidant system in the body. Selenium aids in the prevention of cancer, arthritis, as well as asthma. Crimini mushrooms are also a good source of zinc which is a crucial mineral for the immune system.
Vegetarian Hobo Dinner


It is cooked over hot coals. this dish is prepared with Boca “meat”, carrots, mushrooms, and potatoes.

Ingredients

2 carrots, sliced

6-8 new potatoes, quartered

1/2 onion, large. chunks

2 shallots cut in slices

2-3 cloves garlic, lg. chunks

8-10 cremini mushrooms whole or halved

2 to 4 Tbs. Olive oil

2 Tbs. unsalted butter 2 Tbs. unsalted butter, optional

1 package frozen Boca ground “meat”

Salt and pepper to suit your taste

season salt, dash

Directions

Mix all the vegetables that have been cut in the bowl. Double the aluminum foil and create two pockets. Layer the vegetables in the bottom. Next, layer Boca ground “meat”. Add a final layer of veggies. Pour 1-2 Tbs. Use 1-2 Tbs olive oil for each meal. If possible you can drizzle butter over the top. Season with saltand pepper and season salt. Fold foil to make an airtight seal. Flip halfway through. Serve with ketchup, enjoy!


Portabella/Portobello

Portabellas can grow to 6 inches in diameter which makes them a more robust cousin to white mushrooms. Portabellas are less difficult to spoil than white and crimini mushrooms. Portabellas have a longer growing period that results in softer and more flavorful textures. This makes them excellent for sandwiches.

Portabella Pizza

The delicious pizza with no crust is a part of a low carb diet. It is made up of tomatoes, cheese, and mushrooms.

Ingredients

1 to 2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1 clove garlic, peeled, minced

6 oz. portabella mushroom caps (about 4), cleaned, stems removed

To the taste Add a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper

12 oz. mozzarella cheese, sliced or shreds 10 basil leaves fresh

2 fresh tomatoes, sliced, roasted or broiled Oregano leaf or optional

Directions

Preheat the oven to 450°F. In one small bowl, mix the garlic and the oil. The oil mixture must be applied to all sides of the caps. Place the caps with their tops facing down on a baking sheet covered with parchment. Season with salt and pepper. Lay the tomato, basil and cheese slices in an orderly circle on top of the mushrooms. Sprinkle with oregano if you want. Bake for about 3 to 5 minutes, or until the cheese has melty. Take out of the oven and let it cool.

Shitake (Oak/Chinese/Black Forest).

Shitake caps are full in woody flavor and have a soft, spongy texture. Caps are broad and umbrella-shaped, with a range of colors from tan to deep brown. The Shitake mushrooms are able to keep for up to 14 days and the stems can be used to flavor soups.


  • The use of shitake mushrooms for centuries has been used throughout East Asia to fight colds and flues, shitakes have been proven to strengthen the immune system, fight infection and fight tumors. albino shrooms can also be used to treat nutritional deficiencies as well in liver disorders.
Miso Soup


Ingredients

4 C. water

1 to 2 C. chopped organic vegetables

1 1/2 Tbs. 1 1/2 Tbs.

Tofu Miso Firm Cut into 1/2-inch cubes

3 inches of dried wakame seaweed (found in a majority of health food stores)

2 organic shitake mushrooms, dried (Can be pre-soaked as per the directions on the packaging.

Directions

Bring the water to a boil in a small saucepan. Add chopped mushrooms and chopped vegetables to the boiling water. Reduce the heat, cover and let it simmer until the vegetables are tender (about 8 to 15 minutes based on the vegetables used). After the vegetables have simmered for around 5 minutes, pour 1/4 cup of the hot vegetable broth into an additional bowl. Mix miso in a bowl until it becomes the consistency of a paste. Add tofu in the bowl of miso mix and set bowl aside until vegetables are tender. Tear seaweed into small pieces and add it to the pot.

When vegetables are tender When they are tender, add the miso mix from the bowl to the pot. Allow to stand for 3 – 4 minutes. Miso should never be heated at high temperatures as it could kill microorganisms that help digestion and healing. Remember making this healing soup is very intuitive. You are able to experiment with various combinations of miso and vegetables. This miso soup recipe will allow you to honour the wisdom of your body. This soup is an uplifting one.

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